Lemon-Scented Bivouac  

Fatherly and, eventually, teacherly blather. Also: graphic design, baseball, synthetic fabrics, jug band music and, lord help us, the occasional politics.

Thursday, May 01, 2003  

About three years ago if I'da had a weblog I'da invited everyone to go explore infiltration.org. I only just remembered it: Many detailed stories of people just walking where they're not supposed to walk, usually starting at doors marked "No Admittance" or "Employees Only." The results are spooky and a little thrilling -- whole abandoned wings of hospitals, shut-down schools, layers under the street. Everywhere I've worked or gone to school I've been fairly relentless about walking over every inch available to me, but I haven't taken up the habit in other people's buildings.

  posted by Andy @ 5:08 PM §

Oh, sufferin Jaysus. Our President has declared May 1 of every year to be Loyalty Day. Make this stop, someone. Make it stop.

  posted by Andy @ 2:42 PM §

Wednesday, April 30, 2003  

I know it's been a while since I updated the world about the little squirt we call Mr. Baby. Perhaps you'll understand why when we publish what passes for his regular schedule (note: All times subject to change without notice):

7:30 a.m.: Wakes up, feeds, lies in bed next to Mom, growling, wiggling and blindly punching and scratching her chest.
9 a.m.: Dad, pitying Mom, picks up Mr. Baby and changes his diaper. He spends most of the rest of the morning barely staving off Mr. Baby's screaming by carrying, bouncing, hoisting, bobbling, shushing, vibrating and walking Mr. Baby all over the neighborhood.
9:30 a.m.: Eats, gets diaper changed; resumes grunting and arching back, although now he can struggle for a full 2-3 minutes before he starts screaming.
11:10 a.m. Sometimes there is a moment or two of alert quietness while being held by parent. After five minutes or so, grunting, flailing and occasionaly screaming resumes. Also a diaper change somewhere in here.
1:30 p.m.: Eats, gets diaper changed, struggles. Is set down in crib with various vibration and white noise appliances and, after some protestation, often manages to sleep without much assistance.
3:30 p.m.: Lots of sleep, with the occasional squawk.
4:30 p.m.: He can't really still be sleeping, can he?
5:00 p.m.: Should we wake him up?
5:20 p.m.: Awakes and MUST EAT NOW. Over the next 2-3 hours, has 3-4 feedings and diaper changes. Mood variable; usually not stable enough to allow sit-down dinner for both parents.
7:30 p.m. Dad dances with Mr. Baby in the living room, and Mr. Baby replies with a very small hint that he may realize that someone else is in the room. One out of every three days Mr. Baby smiles for four seconds. Still grunts, doubles over and growls most of the time, but is will to make a few exceptions.
8:00 p.m.: Evil vapors enter Mr. Baby through nostrils. For the next 3-4 hours he screams as soon as he is not actively being swaddled, bobbled, shushed very loudly and held in someone's arms. If whoever is holding him reaches for the remote control to the VCR and thus removes his hand from Mr. Baby, Mr. Baby often screams as if he is being stabbed. If Mr. Baby is being walked in his sling and whoever is walking him stops to tie his shoe, Mr. Baby screams as if he is being stabbed. Often Mr. Baby can be kept from screaming but he instead makes sounds as if he is trying to pass a balled-up porcupine through his intestines. Sometimes 45 minutes or more of walking Mr. Baby will encourage him to sleep, which is scary because he's supposed to save his sleep for tonight.
10 p.m.: Mr. Baby sleeps for a few minutes, leading his parents to think that maybe it's bedtime. His parents set him down and, a few minutes later, Mr. Baby lets them know that it isn't bedtime yet.
11:30 p.m.: Having eaten, Mr. Baby is swaddled and bounced on his father's jiggly leg while the radio, set between stations, blasts static in Mr. Baby's ear. After 10-15 minutes of a stunned expression, Mr. Baby verry gradually closes his eyes, first for a few seconds at a time and finally they just close. Mr. Baby is set in his bassinet and sleeps until about 4:15 a.m.
4:15 a.m. Mr. Baby wakes and wants to eat. He also gets the dogs very excited to be alive and maybe eat, so that they jog, whine and bark until they are dealt with. Mr. Baby eats then, his face sodden with milk, he passes out and sleeps again until next morning.

Let me just say that yes, he has been checked out for medical disorders thank you very much, and no, nothing is physiologically wrong with him. Whether it's colic or not hardly matters since our response is basically the same. On his worst days our life feels like there's a huge fire-alarm bell in our living room that may go off without warning at any given moment and often does. Given that I rarely have my hands free, I have developed new hobbies of looking at the floor and listening to cars go outside.

Oops. Must go now.

  posted by Andy @ 5:29 PM §

Tuesday, April 29, 2003  


No, you're not looking at Elliott. That's one of the many gems from the Thrift Store Art Gallery. I don't have time for a comprehensive list of the best of the best (there are 12 packed galleries), but Girl In Shorts Sliding Down Wooden Banister has to be one of the greats. I also enjoy this silicon couple and The Red Headed Jesus are also particularly great.

  posted by Andy @ 3:02 PM §

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